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Biology

The science of life.

About

Biology helps develop an informed sense of how we may individually and collectively continue to fit into the complex ecology of our planet. Biologists are employed in research, teaching, administration, service, and sales in governmental agencies, educational institutions, private business, and industry.

Along with chemistry, biology is also a degree that should be considered by a student whose career goal is a doctorate-level credential in a health-related field. An undergraduate degree in biology can be a stepping stone to a career as a doctor, dentist, orthodontist, or veterinarian, for example. Students should keep in mind that to gain entrance to a doctorate-level program, completing the required prerequisites is generally more important than type of degree obtained. With that in mind, students should study the prerequisites of the programs to which they plan to apply, and work closely with advisors to make sure that those prerequisites are satisfied.

At Tacoma Community College, science and engineering students enjoy:

  • Small classes
  • Faculty excited about teaching
  • Labs taught by the same faculty member as the lecture
  • Extensive interaction with the faculty
  • Well-equipped labs
  • Economical tuition

 

 

 

Biology 

Biology is a very diverse field of study, and it intersects with related disciplines including chemistry, environmental studies, and medicine. This is reflected by the courses required for various baccalaureate degrees in the natural sciences. TCC offers two Associate Degrees to serve this diversity. Students should work closely with an advisor to select the degree path that best fulfills their goals.

Associate of Arts in Biology 
Associate of Science with a Biology Specialization 
Career Options

(DTA/MRP - Transfer Degree) (Prog.Code AS-B)

This degree includes all of the general education distribution requirements typically required by four year universities and prepares students for many biology major areas. Students who choose this degree want to complete their non-science courses at TCC and zero in on the math and science courses required for their majors at their four-year schools.

Advising Flyer (PDF) Associate of Arts in Biology degree
Degree Worksheet (PDF) Associate of Arts in Biology degree
2018-19 Distribution Course List (PDF)

Schedule-Planning Notes 

  • Some students may need to take additional prerequisite courses.
  • The Humanities (15 credits) and Social Science (15 credits) courses must be selected from the Humanities and Social Science Approved Distribution Course List.
  • Students must take courses in 2 different Humanities disciplines and 2 different Social Sciences disciplines.
  • No more than 5 credits in world language at the 100 level may be used to meet the Humanities Distribution requirement. No more than 5 credits in performance/skill (P/S) courses may be used to meet the Humanities Distribution requirement.
  • At least one course applied to the degree must be from the list of approved Multicultural courses on the Approved Distribution Course List.
  • Elective credits should be planned in consultation with a biology advisor. Electives allow students to include additional courses to prepare for the biology major based on transfer college selection. Examples include a full year sequence of organic chemistry for majors (CHEM 261, 262, and 263); a physics sequence (e.g., PHYS 114/115), math beyond the Math& 151 level, or statistics (Math& 146).
  • Elective courses required to reach a minimum of 90 total credits should be selected in consultation with an advisor, as appropriate for the intended transfer institution.
  • No more than three Physical Education Activity credits may apply to this degree.

 

Suggested First Year Schedule 

Note: It's possible to start this schedule fall, winter, or spring quarter. 

 

Fall Winter Spring
CHEM& 161 CHEM& 162 CHEM& 163
BIOL& 160 MATH& 151 Humanities/Social Sciences
ENGL& 101 ENGL& 102 Biol& 221

Suggested Second Year Schedule

Note: it's possible to start this schedule fall, winter, or spring quarter.

Fall Winter Spring
BIOL& 222 BIOL& 223 Humanities/Social Sciences
Humanities/Social Sciences Humanities/Social Sciences Humanities/Social Sciences
Humanities/Social Sciences Elective Elective
     

(AS-T Transfer Degree) (Prog. Code UD11)

This degree requires more math and chemistry, but does not fulfill all of the general education distribution courses usually required for a bachelor's degree. Students who choose this degree will complete the rest of their general education distribution courses after transferring to a four-year institution. But, for many students the Associate of Science degree better prepares them for the junior-level coursework required for their science major.

Schedule-Planning Notes 

  • Some students may need to take additional prerequisite courses.
  • The Humanities and Social Science courses must be selected from the Humanities and Social Science Approved Distribution Course List.
  • At least one course applied to the degree must be from the list of approved Multicultural courses on the Approved Distribution Course List.
  • Elective credits should be planned in consultation with a biology advisor. Electives allow students to include additional courses to prepare for the biology major based on transfer college selection. For example, many BS degrees in biology require from two to three quarters of physics and some students find it better to complete those courses before transferring to a four-year college or university.
  • No more than three Physical Education Activity credits may apply to this degree.
  • No more than five credits may be from courses that are not listed under the Communication, Quantitative/Symbolic Reasoning, Humanities, Social Sciences, Natural Sciences, or General Distribution Courses sections of the Approved Distribution Course List.


Advising Flyer Associate of Science, Biology Specialization
Comparison of Requirements Associate Degrees for Biology Students at TCC
Degree Worksheet (PDF) Associate of Science Degree with Biology Specialization
2018-2019 Distribution Course List (PDF)

Suggested First Year

Note: schedule may be started any quarter

Fall Winter Spring
CHEM& 161 CHEM& 162 CHEM& 163
MATH& 151 MATH& 152 MATH& 153 or MATH& 146
ENGL& 101 BIOL& 160 BIOL& 221

Suggested Second Year

Note: schedule may be started any quarter

Fall Winter Spring
BIOL& 222 BIOL& 223 Social Sciences
CHEM& 261 CHEM& 262 CHEM& 263
Humanities or Social Sciences Elective Humanities or Social Sciences

Biology Career Pathways 

A biology degree is good preparation for a number of career paths, including:

  • Medicine
  • Dentistry
  • Orthodontics
  • Veterinary Medicine
  • Wildlife Biology
  • Molecular and Cellular Biology
  • Botany
  • Fisheries Science
  • Environmental Science

Be sure to work closely with your advisor to make sure you have selected the right degree for your chosen career path.

Research careers for this area of study. 

 

Questions?

Contact a biology faculty advisor